How to build up consumer trust in the age of GDPR

Nick-Caley-ForgeRockData-driven marketing has always required a level of responsibility when it comes to handling consumer data, but GDPR has now turned this into a legal requirement, with severe consequences for non-compliance. Add in the recent Cambridge Analytica scandal, and it is perhaps easy to see why consumers are much more aware of issues around personal data.
To succeed in this new climate of data-awareness brands need to go beyond mere compliance with the new regulations and make sure they offer consumers a new deal on the data they share.
Consumers have felt that they do not get good value for their data for some time. Research ForgeRock conducted earlier this year found that just 17% of UK consumers feel that the data they share with brands is used to benefit themselves, compared to 41% who say it mainly benefits the businesses who hold it. Likewise, a majority of UK consumers (57%) are worried that they have shared too much personal data online.
With the new rights granted by GDPR, we are therefore likely to see increasingly large numbers of consumers choosing not to engage with brands who that are not seen as trustworthy.
Our research has also revealed a clear correlation between how in control consumers feel, and how much they trust companies. Amazon (60%), banks and credit card companies (58%) and mobile phone operators (51%) were all ranked as the organisations that gave users most control over their data.
To build trust with consumers brands and marketers therefore need to build their data and consent strategies around transparency and control. By focusing on these core principles, not only can brands retain their existing customer relationships, but they will actually be able to strengthen these relationships and create a competitive advantage when it comes to attracting new leads.
Now that data rights are a key concern among consumers, they will become a bargaining chip for brands to win new customers and develop customer loyalty. There is a first-mover advantage to be gained by brands that go further than compliance with GDPR, offering a true exchange of value with insights, incentives and offers that are more relevant and personal.
By involving the customer with their own data and empowering them with the option to dynamically control the amount and type of data that is shared, you can build the trust and differentiation that will allow your business to thrive in the short and long-term.

Nick Caley is vice-president of financial services and regulatory at ForgeRock

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